Contradiction In Sociology

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1. Is ‘mass culture’ a contradiction in terms? Yes, in the end it is. This can be tricky and complicated answer to a short question. So, before anything else, we need to de-construct the question in order to dig deep enough to get a clear answer. Our image of culture has become more complex over time and is now more than ever harder to explain. This leads to a number of important questions about the culture, culture industry, pop culture and anything culture related, to become a challenging topic in the social sciences. Although, sociology may be present as “an oversimplified view of a culture as something integrated, unified, settled and static:” (Featherstone, 2010:13) it’s, in fact, “something relatively…show more content…
Culture in sociology is analyzed by thinking and describing the way of acting and how the material objects can come together in a person’s way of life, influence their behavior, change opinions… The word “culture” itself is an abstract concept. To speak of the “sociology of culture” is to suggest that culture is something that needs to be explained — by something else entirely separated from the domain of meaning itself. To speak of the sociology of culture is to suggest that explanatory power lies in the study of the “hard” variables of social structure, such that structured sets of meanings become superstructures and ideologies driven by more these more “real” and tangible social forces. The word itself does not have a solid definition, but it can be applied to more solid conceptions like language or art and used as a construction and identification. Through culture we create identification. Is culture significant to us? Better yet, how is culture significant to us? Culture is significant, because it acts an identifier of a group or community. When groups of people live together in a certain scenario, they organize themselves socially sharing common beliefs and symbols that can be used to explain their world. They identify themselves by their costumes, values, rituals or traditions. Things like language, art and religion can be major…show more content…
It was first marked by the Frankfurt’s negative and elitist view on the culture industry, arguing between individuality and pseudo-individuality. By High Culture it’s meant to refer to a set of cultural products, mainly in the field of arts, which have their own value and are held in esteem by a culture. It is mainly seen as the culture of the aristocrats or the burgeouse. By contrast, low culture is everything that is consumed by the less educated or the masses, in which category we can put tabloids, reality TV, pop music and others. Popular culture is seen as all the images, attitudes, fashion that happens within the mainstream of a given culture. Cultural specialists are often caught in a difficult relationship with the market and the wider audiences they can reach. “Conditions that favor the autonomization of the cultural sphere will better allow cultural specialists to monopolize, regular and control cultural production and to place art and intellectual pursuits above everyday life.” (Featherstone, 2010: 16) By then culture had grown in size, it became more about media, art, novels – more of everything. Culture ended up being a mass product. Culture extended itself into other areas of popular life, (i.e. politics, wellbeing, morality…) it became tangled and a part of culture also. Everything interacts with everything else. With the predominance of money and technology there is a growth
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